5 Keys to Give Your Resume a Facelift

Erin Kennedy, MCD, CMRW, CPRW, CERW, CEMC, is a Certified Professional Resume Writer/Career Consultant, and the President of Professional Resume Services, named one of Forbes “Top 100 Career Websites”.

It’s not enough to just have a standard resume. You must have a targeted resume for each position you are applying for. If you are not getting the interviews and opportunities you want, it’s time to rethink your current resources. Here are five keys for giving your resume a face-lift.

Key #1- Replace the Objective

It used to be that resumes would start out with an objective statement, something like: “To obtain a position where I can use my education and experience to achieve a high-paying position with room for advancement.”…BEEP! Wrong answer! An employer is not interested in what you are looking for. They want to know what you can for them. When an employer first sees your resume, you have an average of six seconds to catch their eye so make it about them. Replace this with a well-written summary that highlights your top skills and abilities, any attributes and characteristics that will contribute to the job, and what makes you unique and best suited for the position.

Key #2 – Think Like a Marketer

When writing an effective resume, rather than viewing it as looking for a job, consider the process as an opportunity to market your skills and experience. Focus on offering potential employers what you have in order to increase their profitability rather than trying to earn a paycheck for yourself. Make it about delivering value to them. Show you can save them money, increase their revenue, improve their performance, expand their market. The same sales strategies used in the marketing arena work for presenting yourself to a potential employer.

Key #3 – Focus on Your Skills

Your skills are what are going to get you the position you desire, so make sure to clearly identify the skill set you bring to the position. Use your strong points to entice a business recruiter in a way that makes them feel like they need what you have to offer. Impress them with what you can do for them. Review the job description carefully for the skills used throughout. Then use these same keywords in your resume, communicating how you used them to deliver value to your employer.

job interview

When an employer first sees your resume, you have an average of six seconds to catch their eye so make it about them.

Key #4 – Highlight a Specific Job

Don’t leave out this essential bit of information. The targeted job title should be listed along with your contact information on your resume. This is your chance to draw recruiters or interviewers in. Putting it with your contact information is the ideal spot since it makes it more apparent and eyes are naturally drawn toward this area. If you are uploading your professional paperwork, including a targeted job title makes it more visible in online databases and search results.

Key #5 – Begin with a Performance Profile

Resumes and cover letters should begin with your ability to do the job. This means you need to do your research to identify what the specific needs of the company are and market to those needs. To create a performance profile, look at the requirements for your desired position and rewrite them as skills you have to offer. This does not need to be a long paragraph; try to keep it to five lines maximum. It’s also acceptable to use a bulleted list for emphasis. This also adds some visual appeal and will attract the reader’s eyes.

Each resume should be targeted to the specific position you are applying for. If you aren’t receiving the attention you think your resume deserves, review it carefully in these areas to determine what is lacking or reach out to the professionals for advice.

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